The government has announced that from 2017, solar panels used for heating water will no longer receive subsidies.

The subsidies – which are currently available under the renewable heat incentive (RHI) – are now due to be axed next year. The solar industry has reacted angrily to what it sees as another unfair blow to the sector.

The government’s decision coincides with a warning by the parliamentary Energy and Climate Change Committee, which stated that changes already made to the government’s energy policy could result in higher bills for consumers.

Defending its decision, the government said solar thermal receives the highest level of subsidies among the technologies in the RHI. The government also claimed that 50 percent of those who had installed a solar thermal scheme said they would have gone ahead even without a subsidy.

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